Teeth are the most important characteristic
in identifying mammals. What and how they eat is indicated by their teeth.
The types, shape, and number of teeth are important.
There are four main types of teeth found
in mammals. Each type of tooth has a different purpose. Some mammals have
all of these types; some have only two or three types. *Herbivores*
like white-tailed deer have tall molar teeth
with flat upper surfaces. Notice the well-developed incisors for biting
and cutting on cottontail rabbits. Wide molar
teeth with low bumpy crowns are found on *omnivores*
like coyotes and javelina. *Carnivores*
like bobcats must have sharp canine teeth in
order to grab and stab the flesh of their *prey*.
are designed for: biting, cutting, and
are designed for: seizing, piercing, and tearing.
are designed for: grinding, crushing, shearing,
are designed for: grinding and crushing.
In addition, carnivores have *carnassials*
that are used for shearing meat. Carnassials are the last upper premolar
combined with the first lower molar teeth. Bobcats
have carnassial teeth.
||Sing along with the Fields Family
Singers and learn from the lyrics of "The